A NEW initiative that teams up inventors and business brains has been launched.

Future Worlds is a new platform which will seek to highlight the commercial opportunities resulting from the work of researchers and students at the University of Southampton The launch in London saw five aspiring entrepreneurs – ranging from an undergraduate student to a professor – pitching their businesses, with investment opportunities as varied as multipurpose, portable medical tests, and an augmented real-time map technology for disaster response.

Also speaking at the event was mobile software engineer, Southampton alumnus and Arieso founder, Shirin Dehghan.

Arieso was critical to supporting mobile networks at the advent of 3G, and was sold for $85m in 2013.

Shirin said: “It’s fantastic to see enterprise-minded people at the University of Southampton working together on this model example of a start-up community. This is much needed in the UK and the more universities that follow the example of Future Worlds the better.”

Start-ups already benefitting from Future Worlds’ help include BluPoint and Crossa.

BluPoint are in talks with The Gates Foundation having recently received £500,000 from Innovate UK to deploy their local web product across the developing world.

Meanwhile Crossa, a roadside assistance app for cyclists, are speaking to major UK bike retailers.

Crossa founder, Agata Tomaszewska, said at the event: “Future Worlds has been an invaluable resource when it comes to advice and high-value introductions. The mentoring and training that we received has been absolutely amazing.”

Other delegates included Chris Broad, director of Apple Europe and Future Worlds mentor and sponsor. He said: “Being a Future Worlds mentor is giving me the opportunity to have some fun working with really smart people on really interesting projects, where I can help move things along.”

Future Worlds has been developed by a team led by serial entrepreneur Dr Reuben Wilcock, principal enterprise fellow at the University of Southampton.

He said: “It’s hugely inspiring to see what our students and researchers can do and to share their enthusiasm for future technologies. Future Worlds is growing a start-up culture that offers everything our entrepreneurs need to change the world with their ideas.”

Investors, mentors and companies interested in joining the initiative can contact Dr Wilcock at join@futureworlds.com.